Fury pulled out of his undisputed fight against Usyk after being cut in sparring and the injury will be a big factor in their rescheduled May fight, according to one of Usyk’s sparring partners
Oleksandr Usyk has been told he should target Tyson Fury’s eye injury when they meet in their rescheduled undisputed fight.
Usyk was scheduled to face fellow heavyweight champion Fury for the undisputed world titles on February 17, but the Brit pulled out of the fight on just over two weeks’ notice after being cut in sparring. Usyk had been training out in Spain for several months whilst Fury had been in Saudi Arabia since New Year’s Eve preparing for the fight.
Video footage later emerged of the exact moment Fury was cut in sparring as he appeared to be accidentally elbowed in the eye. The nasty gash above his right eye is the same injury Fury suffered in his 2019 win against Otto Wallin and Usyk’s sparring partner Emanuel Odiase thinks the cut will be a factor in their rescheduled May 18 meeting.
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“Three months is dangerous because you’ve seen the cut has been opened up. For sure, Usyk is going to have that in his gameplan right now to target that eye. He won’t go away from his usual gameplan, he will still do what he does but you’ve seen how he got cut. If he’s in close and Usyk could do some boxing, it could open up again and this is a huge factor,” Odiase told Mirror Fighting.
Fury was rumoured to be having a tough training camp but silenced critics by showing off his lean physique after pulling out of the fight. Usyk was ‘forcing sparring partners to quit’ and Odiase admitted the Ukrainian was peaking at the time they were made aware of Fury’s injury.
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“He looked the best in this camp, as good as ever. I think he felt it as well. He was in good shape and then boom, fight is postponed. As the man he is, I don’t think he will get distracted. I wish them all the best and a lot of health, it’s annoying but that’s life. You’ve got to stay cool, calm and collected because if you let that stuff get in your head it’s not good for you,” Odiase added.
“It’s going to be annoying for him because he’s been peaking in training camp. He’s done that before, I was out in Turkey last March when he was preparing for their fight that was supposed to happen in April but it never happened. He’s in really good form and is prepared for the style Fury is going to bring to the table.”